Update from Angela Dearing, Deputy Director Housing

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Posted on16 Sep 2020

Meet the teams

The Housing and Communities Teams work with all residents, tenants, leaseholders, shared and full owners, providing them with access to a range of services, advice and support, carrying out repairs and making improvements to their homes. They also work with residents to shape their communities as well as the services we offer.

We are making some changes across our teams to bring increased flexibility and capacity and to make sure we are ready to work with residents and communities to improve and modernise what we do and how we do it.

The changes are being introduced gradually and where there is a specific change that affects particular residents, we are writing to households individually to explain what this is.

Reason for the change

The service has not fundamentally changed since 2014 and work to develop this new structure started before the pandemic. However, during lockdown we have had to work in different ways, particularly using technology to help deliver priority services, and this has identified new opportunities for the way we work.

Angela Dearing, Deputy Director Housing explains:

"The changes to our teams are part of our plans to improve, and there will be opportunities for residents to influence what we do and how we do things. We want to fully understand your experience as residents to help inform change. We want to build on what has worked well during the pandemic and the flexibility and resourcefulness our teams have shown, to further develop our services. We know some of our systems need updating and we will be looking at how we use technology as an enabler, to provide you with the best possible service."

Transforming services and working with communities

This new structure is designed to enable us to achieve our core outcomes which are:

  • More people live in decent and affordable homes
  • More people can improve their prospects
  • More people are independent and well
  • More people are shaping our communities

Overall, our services will be arranged as follows:

  • Housing Teams-providing our core housing and tenancy support, including the allocation of homes, incomes management, support to residents in sheltered accommodation and money and benefit advice
  • Property Services- repairing and improving our homes and ensuring they meet health and safety compliance standards
  • Service transformation- providing access to our services and advice, handling day-to-day enquiries, managing your repairs and engaging with our residents to develop new ways of working using technology
  • Communities- working to enable our communities to shape what happens in their neighbourhood- including our work in Hartfields in Hartlepool and through the Hartlepool Action Lab, New Earswick with the Folk Hall as a hub and with our residents in one of our newest communities in Derwenthorpe.

Meet the new housing team

We are making specific changes to the Housing Team with Housing Officers now managing and supporting the sheltered housing schemes and Sheltered Scheme Managers, where applicable for their area. The introduction of two Team Leader roles who will support the Housing Lead on day to day management, and create more capacity for strategic, project and improvement work. The team’s focus will be on housing and tenancy management.

We have already reopened and restarted some of our services which are listed here . Although our staff are predominantly working from their homes as a base they are increasingly out in communities and undertaking visits to individual residents in line with government guidance, details of the team are set out below and you can contact them via email or through Customer Services telephone 08005870211.

Housing officers and the communities they manage

Donna Stead

Area 1

New Earswick [email protected]

Nadia Rehman

Area 2

New Earswick, York central and Leeds [email protected]

Faye Blinkhorn Conroy

Area 3

Derwenthorpe, Huntington and Elvington f[email protected]

Fiona Crawford

Area 4

Scarborough, and Thornton Le Dale. [email protected]

Stephanie Smart

Area 5

Hartlepool [email protected]
Two housing assistants To be recruited

Money and benefit advice

Martin Bell Advice and support on welfare benefits [email protected]

Housing management team leaders

Isobel Copeland Core housing and tenancy work across patches 1 and 2, sheltered housing services [email protected]
Joanne Lofthouse Core housing and tenancy work across patches 3, 4 and 5, income management and benefit advice services [email protected]
Martin Bell Money and benefit adviser [email protected]

Housing Lead

Chris Lord Responsible for strategic delivery and operational management of housing services across all our communities [email protected]

For all enquiries contact Customer Services telephone 08005870211